“The Real Deal: Rotary Toast Honors Local Real Estate Professional and Avid Philanthropist”
The Rotary Club of New Albany has selected Pat Harrison, local real estate professional and philanthropist, as its honoree for the 22nd Annual Rotary Community Toast and Benefit Banquet. The banquet will be held on Friday, November 6 at Huber’s Orchard, Winery and Vineyards’ Plantation Hall.
Each year the Rotary Club of New Albany chooses an individual from the community who has made important contributions to the local area and exemplifies the true spirit of the Rotary motto, “Service Above Self.”
“Pat’s dedication to this community is nearly unmatched by any other,” said Rotary Club of New Albany President Tyler Bliss. “Not only has she contributed substantially to the local economy through her entrepreneurial spirit, she has tirelessly volunteered, led, and given back to causes which have substantially strengthened our community. We can think of no one more deserving of this great honor.”
Harrison started her career as a chemist for Brown Forman and then Paramount Foods after completing a degree in biology at Spalding University. In 1968 she realized her passion was real estate. She opened Harrison Realty in 1981 and worked hard to become the best real estate agent/broker possible. Later, she partnered with Re/Max to make sure she was able to offer the best to her clients.
Harrison has been a significant advocate for causes and a philanthropist in the southern Indiana community. Her dedication and contributions to the Arts Council of Southern Indiana has helped shape the organization whose home bears her name. The Pat Harrison Art Gallery and the Ivy Tech Clock Plaza have been recipients of her generosity. She served on the New Albany Bicentennial Commission and serves on multiple boards in the community including on both the Clark and Floyd County Education Foundation boards. She and her partner, the late Kenny Smith, developed several subdivisions and both held leadership roles in the Indiana Association of Homebuilders.
In 2013, a bout with breast cancer channeled her passions and philanthropy to the Norton Cancer Institute Pat Harrison Resource Center. She has also been active in the past and current preservation efforts of the Town Clock Church in historic downtown New Albany.
As customary, each year a portion of the proceeds from the Rotary Toast go to a nonprofit or charity as selected by that year’s honoree. Harrison has selected to have this portion of the proceeds split to benefit two causes in our community that are important to her. Proceeds will go to the Arts Council of Southern Indiana and the Norton Cancer Institute Pat Harrison Resource Center.
The Rotary Club of New Albany was established in 1915 and enjoys a long history of serving its community through the meaningful acts of service of its members and through philanthropic giving. Rotary membership represents a cross-section of the New Albany's business and professional men and women.
The main objective of Rotary is service — in the community, in the workplace, and throughout the world. Locally, Rotarians develop community service projects that address many of today's most critical issues. Rotary has focused its efforts in six areas: peace and conflict prevention/resolution, disease prevention and treatment, water and sanitation, maternal and child health, basic education/literacy, and economic /community development.